Suburban Survivalists Begin Hoarding Food, Water and Weapons. Here’s How to Get Started.
A new breed of survivalists is emerging in this country. I affectionately refer to them as Suburban Survivalists. She (yes, she) is most likely a minivan driving soccer mom who spends most of her time running the household, brushing up on her survival skills by watching Bear Grylls, and practicing target shooting on the weekends.
Advertisers already know the power and influence of these women. They make almost 80% of the family purchasing decisions, thus wielding significant power over a large portion of the GDP. While the husband is bringing home the bacon, she is figuring out how she can keep it frying in case of emergency. She knows it’s not a matter of “if” something catastrophic will take place. It is simply a matter of when, and she is quietly scrambling to get ready for whatever “it” is.
The suburban survivalist realizes that when “it” happens, she has to have pretty darn compelling answers to the following questions… “Where will we get food and water, mamma? Where will we sleep? How will we survive? Will we have to eat bugs?”
That last question in particular wakes us up at night in a cold sweat. We no longer care about seeming like we are part of the lunatic fringe. Our cars are loaded with our 72 hour bug out boxes, (that’s survivalist lingo). Our mantra is “Bring it on, baby. I am prepared!”
On a practical level, storing food, water and weapons “just in case” makes perfect sense. We have insurance policies on almost every other aspect of our lives. Why not insure ourselves against starvation? Unless you are married to a genuine mountain man or you are part of the Mormon faith which has been practicing the art of food storage for centuries, you might be confused about where to begin.
What should a good food Storage program include? I have come to the conclusion that there are four levels of preparedness to consider.
Emergency: What happens if you get stranded in your car, or need to “bug out” for a weekend or even a week or two? Emergency kits (bug out boxes) will help you prepare for these situations. They should include food, water and filtration, basic medical supplies, temporary shelter, and rudimentary tools. High calorie energy bars, MRE’s and freeze dried entrees are essentials for your emergency program.
Short-term Long-term: What happens in an extended power outage, or if you get snowed in for a week or two? What if there is a run on gas prices and stores can’t get food and supplies? Your short-term long-term supply will get you through. Products in the jumbo sized packaging that you find at Costco, Sam’s club, or Wal-Mart are the cornerstone and allow you to make progress quickly.
Stock up on extra canned and jarred food items that you can rotate in and out of your normal food inventory. Also, you can cook and freeze extra meals, or even can some of your favorite items. My goal is to maintain a 3 month supply of extra rations at all times. Organization and dating are important, as well as creating a first in, first out (FIFO) inventory system.
Mid-term Long-term: You are going deeper now, planning for unforeseen circumstances that preclude you from getting food and supplies for six months or a year. It’s possible you would be without refrigeration, power, and running water. Even more canned and jarred goods are essential along with some freeze dried entrees and bulk supplies. You might want to have the ability to grind your own grains, collect and filter water, grow your own vegetables, cut wood and cook over a fire using Dutch ovens. At the bare minimum, you need to know how to make camp coffee.
Long-term Long-term: All hell has broken loose. But you have a room stacked floor to ceiling with #10 cans filled with freeze dried delights which can be easily stored for 7-25 years. Options include entrées that require only boiled water to reconstitute, and a broad selection of freeze dried meats, beans, fruits, veggies and staples like grains, salt, sugar and oils that you can use to make homemade gourmet meals while the world is crumbling around you. It will be just you and the cockroaches rebuilding the planet.
Where do you find this stuff? After hours of research, I have narrowed the choices down to my three favorite suppliers.
Mountainhouse.com: Mountain House pioneered the industry and now private labels products for many other suppliers. Right now, their internet store is out of stock on most #10 cans. But you can find their products at many of reputable outdoor stores (REI, Bass Pro shops, etc…) or online at Nitro-Pak.
FoodInsurance.com: They have been in business for only 1 year but are supplied by Mountain House who private labels their recipes. They have a great variety of family kits with flexible payment plans. If you aren’t much of a do it yourselfer, they make it easy to quickly accumulate a strong food storage program through prepackaged kits.
Shelfreliance.com: This is my favorite site. They have a huge variety of entrée’s, bulk foods and staples. With them, I feel I can prepare a huge variety of really high quality foods in any situation. Their prices are very reasonable and they have an incredible shelving system for managing your growing inventory.
Here are some parting words of advice. Long term food storage is a personal philosophy, and you must get clear about your goals and budget for surviving and thriving. Be aware that you cannot possibly prepare for every scenario. Accumulate provisions and tools that are highly adaptable under a variety of extreme conditions. Finally, food insurance is not a one-time thing. It is a change in philosophy and practice. It will take some time to alter your habits. Unless you have a ton of time and money, you’ll most likely need to approach this in phases. Research, should be first on your list.
This article, written by me, was first published as Suburban Survivalists Begin Hoarding Food, Water and Weapons. Here’s How to Get Started. on Technorati.
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